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Yahwey's Gift of Free Will vs Reality

vbaculum
Posts: 1,274
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1/19/2012 1:26:01 PM
Posted: 4 years ago
Free will doesn't exist. Consider this passage from the New Statesmen

"All of our behaviour can be traced to biological events about which we have no conscious knowledge. In the 1980s the neurophysiologist Benjamin Libet demonstrated that activity in the brain's motor regions can be detected some 300 milliseconds before a person feels that he has decided to move. Another lab recently used functional magnetic resonance imaging data to show that some "conscious" decisions can be predicted up to ten seconds before they enter awareness (long before the preparatory motor activity detected by Libet). " (source http://www.newstatesman.com...).

How do religious people who claim a god built free will into them rationalize this belief with reality?
"If you claim to value nonviolence and you consume animal products, you need to rethink your position on nonviolence." - Gary Francione

THE WORLD IS VEGAN! If you want it
joneszj
Posts: 1,202
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1/19/2012 1:41:10 PM
Posted: 4 years ago
At 1/19/2012 1:26:01 PM, vbaculum wrote:
Free will doesn't exist. Consider this passage from the New Statesmen

"All of our behaviour can be traced to biological events about which we have no conscious knowledge. In the 1980s the neurophysiologist Benjamin Libet demonstrated that activity in the brain's motor regions can be detected some 300 milliseconds before a person feels that he has decided to move. Another lab recently used functional magnetic resonance imaging data to show that some "conscious" decisions can be predicted up to ten seconds before they enter awareness (long before the preparatory motor activity detected by Libet). " (source http://www.newstatesman.com...).

How do religious people who claim a god built free will into them rationalize this belief with reality?

Well I for one do not believe in free will. But I do not see how your article refutes the idea. No one in Christian theology would say that man is utterly free in his will. Those who know their theology with free will would say that there are many influences to the will (internal as well as external). Those influences would be chemical (brain, etc.) and more overtly spiritual (sinful nature). Also, it would be nice to know what experiments were conducted. I mean, what if the brain simply received a chemical to tell the body its hungry and so the person made the conscious decision to eat? I doubt that would be hard to determine in a lab with the proper equipment and would say nothing of how 'free will' is discussed in Christian theology.
vbaculum
Posts: 1,274
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1/19/2012 3:20:09 PM
Posted: 4 years ago
At 1/19/2012 1:41:10 PM, joneszj wrote:
At 1/19/2012 1:26:01 PM, vbaculum wrote:
Free will doesn't exist. Consider this passage from the New Statesmen

"All of our behaviour can be traced to biological events about which we have no conscious knowledge. In the 1980s the neurophysiologist Benjamin Libet demonstrated that activity in the brain's motor regions can be detected some 300 milliseconds before a person feels that he has decided to move. Another lab recently used functional magnetic resonance imaging data to show that some "conscious" decisions can be predicted up to ten seconds before they enter awareness (long before the preparatory motor activity detected by Libet). " (source http://www.newstatesman.com...).

How do religious people who claim a god built free will into them rationalize this belief with reality?

Well I for one do not believe in free will. But I do not see how your article refutes the idea. No one in Christian theology would say that man is utterly free in his will. Those who know their theology with free will would say that there are many influences to the will (internal as well as external). Those influences would be chemical (brain, etc.) and more overtly spiritual (sinful nature). Also, it would be nice to know what experiments were conducted. I mean, what if the brain simply received a chemical to tell the body its hungry and so the person made the conscious decision to eat? I doubt that would be hard to determine in a lab with the proper equipment and would say nothing of how 'free will' is discussed in Christian theology.

I've heard about experiments like this for a while. They are more interesting than a simple unconscious hunger pain though. Consider this one:

"In a kind of spooky experiment, scientists at the Max Planck Institute for Human Cognitive and Brain Sciences reveal that our decisions are made seconds before we become aware of them.

In the study, participants could freely decide if they wanted to press a button with their right or left hand.

The only condition was that they had to remember when they made the decision to either use their right hand or left hand.

Using fMRI, researchers would scan the brains of the participants while all of this was going on in order to find out if they could in fact predict which hand the participants would use BEFORE they were consciously aware of the decision."

(http://exploringthemind.com...)
"If you claim to value nonviolence and you consume animal products, you need to rethink your position on nonviolence." - Gary Francione

THE WORLD IS VEGAN! If you want it
vbaculum
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1/19/2012 3:33:05 PM
Posted: 4 years ago
More to the point though is that the fact that all mental events are correlated with physical events in the brain. Obviously, the physical universe is causal and determined. So if the brain exists in the determined universe then no free will is possible. So how can a Christian say they've been given free will when the concept itself doesn't map on to reality.
"If you claim to value nonviolence and you consume animal products, you need to rethink your position on nonviolence." - Gary Francione

THE WORLD IS VEGAN! If you want it
Suqua
Posts: 433
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1/20/2012 2:29:27 AM
Posted: 4 years ago
We are all free moral agents on this earth. Reality! We prove that every day. We all make choices right or wrong, we are free to choose. And to act on that choice. I don't understand your thought. There is obviously more to the idea than you have given. Explain!!!!!!!!!!! What is the intent?
vbaculum
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1/20/2012 9:21:45 AM
Posted: 4 years ago
At 1/20/2012 2:29:27 AM, Suqua wrote:
We are all free moral agents on this earth. Reality! We prove that every day. We all make choices right or wrong, we are free to choose. And to act on that choice. I don't understand your thought. There is obviously more to the idea than you have given. Explain!!!!!!!!!!! What is the intent?

The basic idea is that the universe is predicitable/determined (assuming you have enough information to make any given prediction). For example, if we knew the velocity of every particle or earth (or we could capture that data into a computer) we (or the computer) could predict the weather without error. Since we only have some of information about the particles in earth we can stil predict the weather - just not perfectly.
The point is that universe is predictable; it's deteremined. Anything that could happen tommorrow could be predicted if we knew the velocity of every particle in the universe. In other words, what happens tomorrow has been determined and can't be changed. Tomorrow has already been written (so to speak).

If our brains are part of the universe, and our consciousness and will is governed by our brains then our will is determined; our tommorows have been fixed and we can't change the inevitable. We don't know what tommorow will bring but we do know we can't change it. This is what is meant when it is said that humans don't have free will.

That's all I can do this morning. If it wasn't clear just read the Wikipedia article on free will or determinism.
"If you claim to value nonviolence and you consume animal products, you need to rethink your position on nonviolence." - Gary Francione

THE WORLD IS VEGAN! If you want it
joneszj
Posts: 1,202
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1/20/2012 1:10:27 PM
Posted: 4 years ago
Bummer I feel I miss my opportunity to respond properly :(

Traditionally the term Free Will was debated not over mans autonomy to choose but instead over whether or not his choices are influenced upon (determined). Simply because all decision occurs physically in the mind does not undermine 'free will'. Simply because the decision can be predicted or determined does not necessarily mean that the decision was not made freely (Compatible Determinism read: http://en.wikipedia.org... ).

A little bit of history on the topic of free will. A man named Pelagious debated with a man named Augistine. Pelagious said that mans decision making at birth is 'tabula rosa' a blank slate. Augustine argued that due to the corruption of human nature in the Fall, one's will is not free, but rather a slave to sin. Later Martin Luther and Erasmus argued on similar grounds and later Johnathan Edwards expounded greatly on the subject read: http://www.reformedreader.org... .
"Man can do what he wills but he cannot will what he wills" that is the extent of free will. using free will in a sense that is more then the above always has lead to inconsistencies (particularly with the Bible, but also philosophically). I am fairly a newb with the idea of compatible Determinism but i do know it fits predestination-ism which is what i believe.